In January this year I was hit by a car while riding home from work, sustaining a broken right clavicle. The bone was broken in two places, and a piece approximately two inches long separated, and was lying vertically. No treatment was given at the time, only pain relief. A broken collarbone commonly heals in six to eight weeks. However, this has not been the case with me.
The fracture knitted badly and compressed the Brachial Plexus nerve, which has left my shoulder paralysed and also in constant pain. An operation and plating to the collarbone has taken place, and hopefully next year I should have full use of my arm again.
My question is, how do I regain and then maintain my race fitness? I cannot ride at the moment due to lack of movement in my arm, and experience great discomfort if I do stretch my arm onto the bars using my other arm. I have been on the turbo but it gets boring. I tried rollers but fell off, so that?s out. I joined the local gym and use the running machine and work my legs on the weights.
Can you help me find a training programme? I am a 56-year-old male who rides LVRC events and open time trials.
John Callaghan, LVRC Worcester
I am sure you have accepted that this season?s racing has unfortunately been written off. Therefore you should not concern yourself with regaining race fitness in a hurry because you will not need it for some time. Use the static turbo two to three times a week, incorporating some high intensity interval work.
I am pleased to hear you have joined the local gym, and working on strength training using weights is definitely beneficial. Cross-training using a treadmill and rowing machine will add variety while rebuilding cardiovascular fitness.
But in order for you to return to the road, you need to regain an improved range of movement and strength in your injured arm. Use your gym sessions to carry out strengthening and movement exercises, and stretches as advised by your physiotherapist. Be careful with your diet because the reduced activity may result in unwanted weight gain.
Realistically, your aim should be to achieve an overall return of fitness, enabling you begin your winter training in earnest.
Sports doctor, first cat roadman and club doctor at Westcombe Park Rugby Club and Millwall FC